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RealMedia Variable Bitrate (RMVB) is an extension of the RealMedia multimedia container format. It uses variable bitrate (VBR) compression, which means that it adjusts bandwidth depending how difficult or easy it is to compress a segment of the multimedia content, such as high-action versus low-action scenes.
RealPlayer supports playback of RMVB files in Windows, Mac OS X, and Linux. Since RealNetworks developed RMVB, RealPlayer is the default platform for this file type. It is available as a free download and is easy to use. It supports captions, subtitles, and streaming.
Other software that can open RMVB files include VLC media player and ALLPlayer, which are both free. Keep in mind that RMVB is proprietary and relatively uncommon; used mostly for playing files locally instead of streaming over the Internet.
Developed by: RealNetworks
Initial release: 2010
Free Lossless Audio Codec (FLAC) is a file format that shrinks an audio file’s size, which, as the word “lossless” in the name implies, results in no loss in audio quality or original data. FLAC accomplishes this by using an algorithm that compresses the file to approximately 50 to 70 percent of its original size.
The default program for opening a FLAC file is VLC media player. Other details about FLAC include that it is unpatented, permits music reproduction, is compatible with Telephony Application Programming Interface (TAPI), and is not subject to digital rights management (DRM).
Developed by: Xiph.Org Foundation
Initial Release: 2001
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